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Thread: Unsolicited money saving/accumulation tips for michaelskis

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    Cyburbia Administrator Dan's avatar
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    Unsolicited money saving/accumulation tips for michaelskis

    As we all know, michaelskis is trying to save money for a down payment on a house.

    We've had the cost-cutting "money saving tips" thread before, but not the "socking more cash aside tips" thread, so let's help Mike accumulate some cash for a new house. Remember, this isn't a thread about spending less; it's about saving more.

    I'll start with this ... never spend change. If a newspaper costs 50 cents and you have two quarters, don't use them; instead, use the dollar bill in your pocket. Use the dollar bill acceptor in vending machines. Try to find a parking space outside the range of coin-operated parking meters. Never use the small change tray at convenience stores to round off purchases to the nearest dollar.

    Of course, this means baing a pain with cashiers, but it's worth it; I saved up enough in a couple of years to pay for a week-long vacation to Mexico with my then-girlfriend several years ago. Take all the change you collect, and put it in a jar. Every year, take the jar to your bank, and have them deposit it in your savings account; a good bank should let you deposit unrolled coins if you have an account there.
    Growth for growth's sake is the ideology of the cancer cell. -- Edward Abbey

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    Cyburbian GeogPlanner's avatar
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    Two words...dating moratorium.

    I read something on the average date cost and I was shocked, but after thinking about it...it was right on. Enjoy the company of friends...but take a break from dating and enjoy the me-time. I had so much more money when I was single.
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    Cyburbian Emeritus Chet's avatar
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    If you must get a daily paper, SUBSCRIBE and don't go to the newsstand every day. ($200 annual savings areound here)

    Drop cable and highspeed internet (1,250 annual savings around here)

    Don't hate me, but... SAMS CLUB. Buying bulk always saves. (my annual savings over $600)

    Shop around for your gym membership. Never pay the list price. They are as negotiatble as cars. (My annual savings, about $200)

    Drop your land line and only use your cell phone for all calls. (my annual savings
    $600),

  4. #4
    Cyburbia Administrator Dan's avatar
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    One thing I'll add, since those weren't money accumulation tips; find the difference between the money you save with those tops, and the money you would normally spend, and throw it in the bank. The point is to have more money for a savings account, more so than cutting costs so you have more money to spend on other things.

    Off-topic:
    I can't drop broadband; it's essential for my maintenance of Cyburbia. When I move, it's going to be satellite television and DSL. The rates charged by Adelphia Cable are astronomical compared to what I've paid elsewhere; $125 a month for extended basic cable, HBO and broadband, compared to $90 with Time Warner in KC for digital cable, HBO, and higher speed broadband.
    Growth for growth's sake is the ideology of the cancer cell. -- Edward Abbey

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    Cyburbian jordanb's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Chet
    Don't hate me, but... SAMS CLUB. Buying bulk always saves. (my annual savings over $600)
    Yeah but some people have morals.

  6. #6
    Cyburbian Emeritus Chet's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by jordanb
    Yeah but some people have morals.
    SHopping at Sam's Club is immoral? Thats f*cking stupid.

  7. #7
    Cyburbian zman's avatar
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    Keep 'em coming, like Michaelskis, I too am a young planner looking to buy his first house. These tips are falling on more ears than you guys think...

    Thanks
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    Cyburbian Plus Zoning Goddess's avatar
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    Let your family know you'd really prefer cash instead of other gifts on birthdays and Christmas, since you're saving to buy a home.

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          Downtown's avatar
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    This is kind of a PITA, but we have our checking with a bank that gave us free checking for having our brokerage accounts with them. So we opened savings accounts with our credit union, and every pay period, i immediately write out a check and deposit it into our credit union account, for which we have no atm card, and can't write checks, or even do an online transfer to an account that we could access. To get money out we have to go there during business hours and get it. Even better is if you can get the bank to automatically withdraw from your paycheck.

    Also - I LOVE Microsoft Money (and before XP - Quicken). It allows me to "hide" money in my savings account - where i'll save for things like Christmas presents, our big 10 year anniversary vacation to Australia, a new gas stove, etc. Also, having Money lets me see EVERYTHING we spend money on - so we know exactly where our paychecks go. Its a lot easier to resist the temptation to eat out, or grab a latte when you have in your head that last month you spent $280 on eating out, etc.

    edited to add: ALSO - if you have a "shopper's club card" for your grocery store, deposit the amount of money you "saved" into your savings account on a weekly or bi-monthly basis. So you're actually "saving" money.

  10. #10
    Like Dan, we do the change thing. It's quite easy to save $500 in six months if you do it religiously. (We actually use a plastic office waste pale and it gets about 1/3 full of silver coins only. Pennies go in a separate pale.)

    Make your lunch each day instead of eating out. Around here, you could easily save $100/month this way.

    Buying generic brands is dicey, IMO. Some generics are cheaper but they perform worse. You often don't know this until it's too late.
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    Corn Burning Fool giff57's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Downtown
    ALSO - if you have a "shopper's club card" for your grocery store, deposit the amount of money you "saved" into your savings account on a weekly or bi-monthly basis. So you're actually "saving" money.

    I had a prof. once that ranted about those things. He said they used them to compile information about you and sell it to others.
    “As soon as public service ceases to be the chief business of the citizens, and they would rather serve with their money than with their persons, the State is not far from its fall”
    Jean-Jacques Rousseau

  12. #12
    Cyburbian Emeritus Chet's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by giff57
    I had a prof. once that ranted about those things. He said they used them to compile information about you and sell it to others.
    That's why I make a separate trip without the card for my vodka, cigarrettes, alfredo sauce, mayonaise, ho-hos, etc.

  13. #13
          Downtown's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Gedunker
    Like Dan, we do the change thing. It's quite easy to save $500 in six months if you do it religiously. (We actually use a plastic office waste pale and it gets about 1/3 full of silver coins only. Pennies go in a separate pale.)
    We separate silver from copper as well. Its actually the source of a few fights in our house when Rob throws his quarters in the pennies jar. But really, we so rarely use cash because:

    Get yourself a rewards credit card on something you USE. We get an average $25 a month in gas credit for using our card for EVERYTHING - phone bills, groceries, etc. We then deposit the amount of that credit into our savings account - about $500 a year.

  14. #14
    Gunfighter Mastiff's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Downtown
    We separate silver from copper as well. Its actually the source of a few fights in our house when Rob throws his quarters in the pennies jar. But really, we so rarely use cash because:

    Get yourself a rewards credit card on something you USE. We get an average $25 a month in gas credit for using our card for EVERYTHING - phone bills, groceries, etc. We then deposit the amount of that credit into our savings account - about $500 a year.
    heh heh... I put EVERYTHING POSSIBLE through my rewards card! Bills, gas, groceries, then pay it off every month. Got a free computer last month, working on free airfare to go to Cabo this winter...
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    Make coffee, smoothies, whatever the breakfast liquid of choice is, at home, and bring it to work rather than stopping for $4 coffee. Even if you go the free-trade, shade-grown, unbleached filter route, it's a lot cheaper. I probably save around $600 a year doing that.
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    Do auto bill paying, set up to correspond with paydays. Never have a late payment, so you don't get bled dry by late fees and mess up your credit rating.
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  16. #16
    Gunfighter Mastiff's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Plannerbabs
    Never have a late payment, so you don't get bled dry by late fees and mess up your credit rating.

    Just as an aside... Never, ever, pay the minimum payment. If it's $15, pay $16... That extra buck adds points to the credit rating.
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  17. #17
    Cyburbian michaelskis's avatar
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    Thanks for all the tips, and keep them coming!

    Here is what I have done in the past few months.

    Stopped eating out for lunch. Instead I went to the store and bought bulk hamburger patties, chicken breast filets, and fish filets. During lunch, I go home, fire up the gas grill. Not only does it does it taste better, it is healthier.

    A few neighbors and I all chipped in for cable and a wireless router. All of us have wireless laptops.

    I use the basic FREE cable that the apt gives us. (ABC CBS NBC FOX WGN USA TBS CNN ESPN HBO PBS and TBS)

    For dates, since I have been single, I have decided to wait for a while. If the right girl comes along, she will let me know. But I am not going to go out and look for her.

    Any other tips would be good. (Oh and I can get a lot of bulk stuff at Meijer!)

  18. #18
    Cyburbian Habanero's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Dan
    AsTake all the change you collect, and put it in a jar. Every year, take the jar to your bank, and have them deposit it in your savings account; a good bank should let you deposit unrolled coins if you have an account there.
    I would tend to agree, but take your change in more often so it can accumulate interest. This month alone I've gained $10 in interest.
    When Jesus said "love your enemies", he probably didn't mean kill them.

  19. #19
    Quote Originally posted by Chet
    SHopping at Sam's Club is immoral? Thats f*cking stupid.
    Yeah, if saving money is immoral then call me a sinner! What is more immoral, charging the lowest price possible for bulk items or price gouging by the ma and pa convenience store down the street. But I digress...

    I agree with the coin saving tip. I never use change I just save it all year and use it to pay for X-Mas gifts at the end of the year.

    Wash your car at home. Take the 4-8 bucks you would have spent on a gas station car wash and put it in savings.

    Change your own oil in your car. Take the money you would have spent on the oil change and put it in savings too.

    Sell everything you don't use on E-bay.
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  20. #20
    Cyburbian Michele Zone's avatar
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    Figure out what your actual human needs are and be honest. If you need entertainment, admit that and include it in your planned lower-budget lifestyle. Figure out inexpensive (or less expensive) ways to actually meet those needs rather than taking a "do without" approach. Then come up with realistic figures for the budget for that lifestyle. Then "pay yourself first". A lot of people seem to spend any "extra" money left near the end of the month. If you are one of those people, it is better to avoid such temptations by saving first -- but only if what you save is a realistic amount and not a starvation diet. One of the most expensive bad habits I have ever witnessed is a "poverty mentality" where you think that "saving money" means "not getting your needs met" and the minute you get too stressed or the minute you ease up on the self-disciplined savings goal, you run out and blow a billion dollars trying to take care of all the things you refused to take care of when you were trying to be "good" and save money.

  21. #21
    Cyburbian Habanero's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Chet
    That's why I make a separate trip without the card for my vodka, cigarrettes, alfredo sauce, mayonaise, ho-hos, etc.
    um, Chet, I hate to bother you with this.. but you seem to have forgotten spray cheese, magnums, and vaseline.
    When Jesus said "love your enemies", he probably didn't mean kill them.

  22. #22
    Cyburbian Emeritus Chet's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Habanero
    um, Chet, I hate to bother you with this.. but you seem to have forgotten spray cheese, magnums, and vaseline.
    ROTFLMAO.

    I was posting from work. I have to have *some* secrets, you know!

  23. #23
          roger's avatar
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    Consider buying some of your clothes at secondhand stores. I buy most of my clothes at Goodwill, and I actually started getting compliments on how I dressed once I began shopping there. You'd be amazed what people donate, and it's also kind of fun, like a big scavenger hunt. Think of it as a perpetual garage sale. You can also find all sorts of other cool stuff, like furniture, glassware, flatware, and appliances.

    With change, I like to carry 9 cents around in my pocket; I can use that to turn any amount of change into a multiple of 5 or 10 (i.e. only silver). It also gets rid of pennies, which are hardly worth hoarding anyway.

    A word about reward cards: don't use one if you carry a balance. They're not worth it unless you pay your bill in full every month.

  24. #24
    Cyburbian Plus
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    I know this might / will offend many, Sorry Cyburbians -
    but stop drinking beer, wine and the hard stuff.
    turns and runs for the hills

    If you smoke give that up too.

    Clip coupons.
    Oddball
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    Why don't you dig how beautiful it is out here?
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  25. #25
    Cyburbian michaelskis's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by JNA
    I know this might / will offend many, Sorry Cyburbians -
    but stop drinking beer
    Now Now... let's not get crazy here. And I don't just drink beer, I drink good beer.

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